Marie Fredriksson, Roxette Singer, Dies at 61

Swedish pop star battled cancer for 17 years

Marie Fredriksson
Dimberg Jernberg Management

Marie Fredriksson, singer in the pop duo Roxette, died on Monday morning following a 17-year battle with cancer. She was 61.

“Time goes by so quickly. It’s not that long ago we spent days and nights in my tiny apartment in Halmstad, listening to music we loved, sharing impossible dreams,” Fredriksson’s partner in Roxette, Per Gessle, said in a statement. “And what a dream we eventually got to share!

“Thank you, Marie, thanks for everything,” Gessle continued. “You were an outstanding musician, a master of the voice, an amazing performer. Thanks for painting my black and white songs in the most beautiful colours. You were the most wonderful friend for over 40 years. I’m proud, honoured and happy to have been able to share so much of your time, talent, warmth, generosity and sense of humour. All my love goes out to you and your family. Things will never be the same.”

Fredriksson was born in 1958 in the south of Sweden. She and Gessle met in the ’80s, and after their individual careers gained traction locally the two formed Roxette in 1986. Soon, the world took notice.

The duo’s crossover success came from hits like “It Must Have Been Love,” which was featured in the Richard Gere-Julia Roberts movie “Pretty Woman,” “Listen to Your Heart,” “The Look” and “Joyride.” Roxette sold more than 80 million records worldwide.

Fredriksson was first diagnosed with a severe brain tumor in 2002. Aggressive treatment was successful enough to allow her to return to touring in 2009. In 2016, her doctors advised her to stop.

Fredriksson is survived by her husband Mikael Bolyos and two children Josefin and Oscar. Fredriksson’s management company, Dimberg Jernberg Management, said that services with “only Marie’s closest family present” will be held.

Read more about Fredriksson’s life and career from her Dimberg Jernberg Management obituary here.

Watch the official music video for Roxette’s “It Must Have Been Love” here: